Children and Youth With Special Health Care Needs

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The Katie Beckett Program

The Katie Beckett Program is for Tennessee residents, under the age of 18, with disabilities and/or complex medical needs who would not usually qualify for TennCare. This program helps to fill gaps between the child’s needs and what private insurance will cover.

For Frequently Asked Questions about this program and to learn how to apply for coverage, click here.  

Emergency Preparedness

Planning is a key factor in emergency situations such as tornados, hurricanes, ice storms, or fires. Disaster preparedness is important regardless of gender, race, age, or disability. However, those with disabilities may require extra planning. Over the past several months, families have weathered many storms from tornados to COVID-19. The Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs section of Family Health and Wellness developed emergency alert decals, magnets, and toolkits to assist families across TN.

Emergency Alert Decal

The Emergency Alert Decals are designed to alert first responders that there is a youth with a special healthcare need in the vehicle or home.

For more information or to request an Emergency Alert Decal, please email  Kendra Thomas at


Emergency Toolkits

The emergency toolkit consists of masks, hand sanitizer, first aid kit, travel document holder, flashlight, fillable checklist, and resource card.

For more information or to request an Emergency Preparedness Toolkit, please email Kendra Mitchell at

Emergency Kit Checklist for Families with Children with Special Health Care Needs.

According to the CDC, every family should have an emergency kit in the event of a disaster or situation that may cause you to be unable to leave your home. This is especially true for families with children with special health care needs. An emergency kit should have everything that your child needs, including medicines, batteries, medical supplies, etc. Please follow this link to ensure that your family is prepared in case of a disaster, loss of electricity and any event that would make you unable to leave your house for a few days.

Coronavirus Information for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs

The Tennessee Department of Health is committed to keeping you and your family informed on the latest news around the spread of coronavirus disease 2019, also known as COVID-19.  COVID-19 information changes quickly, so be sure to check the Tennessee Department of Health, the Tennessee COVID-19 Information Hub (, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention websites regularly for the latest news.

To learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine and state COVID-19 testing information, visit the Tennessee COVID-19 Information Hub (

To help protect you and your family from coronavirus , the Centers for Disease Control recommends the following:

Important Ways to Slow the Spread

  •          Get Vaccinated and stay up to date on your COVID-19 vaccines
  •          Wear a mask
  •          Stay 6 feet away from others
  •          Avoid poorly ventilated spaces and crowds
  •          Test to prevent spread to others
  •          Wash your hands often
  •          Cover coughs and sneezes
  •          Clean and disinfect
  •          Monitor your health daily
  •          Follow recommendations for quarantine
  •          Follow recommendations for isolation
  •          Take precautions when you travel

If You are at Risk of Getting Very Sick

What Symptoms to Watch For

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Other symptoms are signs of serious illness. If someone has trouble breathing, Persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion, inability to wake or stay awake, or pale, gray, or blue-colored skin, lips, or nail beds, depending on skin tone, get medical care immediately.

What to Do If You're Sick       

  •          Quarantine and Isolation Calculator
  •          Stay home except to get medical care
  •          Get tested
  •          Separate yourself from other people
  •          Monitor your symptoms
  •          Call ahead before visiting your doctor
  •          If you are sick, wear a well-fitting mask
  •          Cover your coughs and sneezes
  •          Clean your hands often
  •          Avoid sharing personal household items
  •          Clean surfaces in your home regularly
  •          Take steps to improve ventilation at home

 Get care immediately if you are having emergency warning signs, like trouble  breathing, pain or pressure in chest.breathing, pain or pressure in chest.

For more information on how to protect yourself and others, please visit the CDC website.

For information on COVID-19 and children and families with children and youth with special health care needs, see the links below:


For More Program Information:

Call: 615-741-7353 or

This Page Last Updated: October 19, 2022 at 1:44 PM